The Democrat-led General Assembly in Illinois has notable clean energy agenda items that they’re prioritizing during this legislative session now that Governor JB Pritzker is in office.

Coming off of a significant victory to phase in a minimum wage increase to $15 per hour, certain members of the General Assembly are making a push for a number of clean energy bills to get passed and signed into law.

HB 3624/SB 2132 is the Clean Energy Jobs Act. The overall objective of this legislation is to focus primarily on renewable energy development and accessibility. The bill creates a goal for the state of Illinois to reach 45% renewable energy by 2030, and 100% renewable energy by 2050. This is done by increasing the renewable energy procurement under the renewable portfolio standard (RPS). The only other state attempting to go 100% renewable energy is Hawaii. This would make Illinois the first state in the continental United States to go 100% renewable.

The bill overcame a major hurdle by passing the House Energy and Environment Committee, by a vote of 18 voting yes, 11 voting no, and two members not voting.

You can read the legislation here.

HB 2966/SB 1781, also known as “Path to 100,” is primarily being advocated by wind and solar organizations, including the Solar Energy Industries Association and the American Wind Energy Association. The objective of this legislation is to build upon the Future Energy and Jobs Act (FEJA), which was passed in 2016. This legislation has a goal to reach 40% renewable energy by 2030. The current renewable portfolio standard (RPS) goal is 25% by 2025.

In addition, this legislation aims to require procurement of 10,000,000 renewable energy certificates (RECs) from wind and solar projects by 2020, and then increase to 45,000,000 by 2030, with 50% coming from solar and 50% coming from wind.

HB 2966 also passed the Energy and Environment Committee, with 19 voting yes and 12 voting no.

You can read the legislation here.

These bills will be held on “second reading” as discussions with relevant stakeholders and interested parties continue.

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